Saturday Question: Do You Instagram?

I thought of this title as a joke. I was going to start by explaining that I realized there was no such verb. Sure, these days we all google something, at least hear about people tweeting fake news and periodically unfollow people who don’t amuse us any more on different platforms. But instagramming? So, I wrote the question in the title and then … googled to check. Yep. According to Merriam-Webster, Instagram is a verb.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #39:

Do You Instagram?

Do you have an account on Instagram? If no, why? (And you can skip the following questions.) Do you post pictures there? If yes, how often and do they have anything to do with perfume? How often do you visit Instagram? Who do you follow? Do you @tag people? Do you use #hashtags in your posts? If yes, why? If no, why? Do you actively seek new people to follow? Have you ever bought anything based on the advertising that you see there? If you finish your feed (if it ever happens, of course), do you look at their “suggested” content?

And, finally, unless your account is for private communications, what is your Instagram name? If you want, post a link to any of the pictures that you published there and wished more people would see it.

My Answer

I’m relatively new to Instagram: my account is just slightly over two years old. In these 2+ years I posted 57 pictures – less than a picture a  fortnight. For a long time I couldn’t get over a thought that a picture had to be of something extremely interesting, rare or exceptional in some way to warrant sharing it with others “as is,” for the picture’s sake and not as an illustration to some topic (read “many printed words”).

For my partial conversion, I “blame” mostly my very first guest writer, hajusuuri, who, in addition to being an avid Instagrammer (No, this one is not a real word. Yet.), would often link to her daily Insta posts from the NST’s SOTD thread. I would tap from there to see a picture, then would see pictures from others or recognize names in “likes” and realize that I “knew” those people. So, I’d follow them, and the next time I get to Instagram to see hajusuuri’s SOTD picture (sometimes with a cute toy cat or one of the dozen (?) of owls she must have accumulated by now), I would have more pictures to go through.

Later, I decided to use Instagram to publish pictures that would go with the current post: I often have more pictures I like than I need for the post, so the Insta post would serve a double purpose: to announce to people who go there more often than to their mailboxes that I’ve published another post (though, Instagram doesn’t make it easy to “link out”) and to get one more picture “in” (it’ll show on the side bar of the blog, next to the post).

Unless I happen across hajusuuri’s link on NST (if she posted it and if I had time to read the thread, none of which happens every day), I visit Instagram 2-3 times per week. I made a couple of purchases being reminded by an IG ad about products I already had an intention to buy (I’ll leave details to another post). Mostly, I follow perfume people – similar to what I used to do on Twitter 8-9 years ago or FB 5-6 years ago. I do not look for more people to follow, but add anyone who I know from other platforms. On principle, I stop when I reach the end of my feed: while I’m fine watching ads when I look through my friends’ pictures, I refuse to help IG make money on me browsing pictures they think might interest me.

I rarely tag anybody. And I do not think I’ve ever used a hashtag. Ever. On any of the platforms. I’m not sure whether people actually use those to find a content and people to follow, but since I’m not trying to grow my “audience” there, and I’m not sure that anyone who doesn’t “know” me would follow my “link in bio” to this blog – and blog readers are the only audience I’m interested in – I’m reluctant to “Germanaize” language even when posting pictures of the #cutestcatever (see the Instagram window on the right (web) or below (mobile)).

My IG name is undina_ba . How about you?

 

Instagram as a verb

 

Do You Instagram?

 

Disclaimer: this blog doesn’t use any affiliated links or benefit from any of the G-d awful ads that some of you might see inserted tastelessly by the WP engine inside the post and/or between comments. Encouraging readers to post more comments does not serve any purpose other then getting pleasure from communicating with people who share same interests.

37 thoughts on “Saturday Question: Do You Instagram?

  1. I love it when Rusty pops up on feed. I don’t follow many people and these days I mainly only post when I have a blog post to share – @abottledrose. It’s just too much of a time zapper and I’m not good at photos anywy. I sporadically hashtag. No idea if they work. I mostly like it when people use them for comedy value.
    I mostly follow perfume people and a few ‘influencers’ if I like them and their content.
    As for ads, I actually bought a winter azalea via an ad thus week because there was £10 off offer.
    I don’t look at the suggested content. The best part of not following many people is I catch up on my feed pretty quickly 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • I actually also enjoy the fact that I can reach the end of my feed: there is something satisfying in catching up on the most of the posts (one can never do it on FB – if not for the number of “friends” then because FB chooses what to show when your feed is significantly long.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Obviously I Instagram, yes. I think my account is almost as old as my blog and as far as I can remember I created it to share in a quick way with people the things I saw during my very first Esxence. From that point I’ve been trying to post on a regular base but I lost some interest lately since IG became so commercialised.

    I post as @chemistbottle

    I really don’t follow that many people, I don’t care about how many observe me either. IG is not a popularity contest for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wonder, whose idea it was to use IG for sharing pictures in your family? Has it come from children? Or just happened? Do other family members use their accounts just for the same purpose, or are they more active, beyond just family sharing?

      Like

  3. Hello Undina, I most certainly do Instagram. We already follow each other. My user name is @richgoller.

    I post 4-5 times a week, almost always on fragrance. As perfume is also a visual medium (all those beautiful bottles), I enjoy sharing and commenting on other’s content. I use lots of hashtags and tags (often the perfumer and company).

    There are so many good pages to follow and I wouldn’t want to forget anyone, so won’t make any recommendations for those reasons.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Richard, your pictures are beautiful! I always liked them in your blog posts, and it’s great to see them more often on IG now.
      I must say that your account is very different from all accounts of perfume people (as in “not brands or YouTube personalities”) that I follow: almost every your post is getting dozens of comments. I’m used to seeing “likes,” sometimes a lot of “likes” on other, more professionally handled (read “those who actively use tags and hashtags”) perfume-related accounts. But seeing comments is extremely rare. Do you know how it happened? I’m just curious and trying to understand, not to replicate :) Were you featured/reposted by one of the major mass-market brands that you featured? Are you a part of some group? Something else less obvious?

      Like

      • Big thank you, Undina, for your compliment! Instagram is a bit of a beast and I keep the beast well fed by being very active on it. I do my best to return all the likes and comments I receive, which could be one of the reasons I get a fair amount. I suspect some of the larger accounts which have 20k+ followers, but surprisingly few comments (10 or less) may have bought their followers.

        I also have a loyal following who regularly comment. And I enjoy and comment on their content too.

        Hope this helps.

        Like

  4. I don’t instagram. I don’t have the time and if I would have I am not sure if I would either. I love the written word and hang on to that way of communicating like a dinosaur…But…I do pop in and lurk on Instagram once in a while (on Cookie’s queens Insta, and Tara’s when she posts), and I do like the visuals of it. I suppose in some ways I don’t feel comfortable with the way the world is changing into an ever increasing short lived dopamine driven string of moments. I miss the written blogs that have disappeared, although I really understand why they did.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m with you on all points! None of the social media platforms comes to me natural. I have a Twitter account, where I forced myself to participate since most of perfume people with whom I communicated 8+ years ago were there. Since then it luckily passed, so I keep ghost publishing there from my blog, but I’m not sure if anyone even sees there that tree falling.
      FB is completely foreign to me: I don’t like the pace of disappearing or not showing at all posts, I belong to groups with thousands members who don’t know anybody but those severs extroverted (and oftentimes admins of the group) people. I thought that posting links to my posts on FB might be an alternative to email and Twitter notification system, but, again, I’m not sure how many people even see them.
      IG is the latest “thing” for me in terms new posts notification mechanism, so I might do it for a while. But other than that, “stationary” blog posts that don’t disappear after seeing them once, and where one might comment a week (or year) later, is much more “my thing.”

      Like

  5. I was a late convert to Instagram – @flittersniffer – for a long time I resisted it, thinking how pointless to post pretty pictures just for the sake of it…more stuff to scroll through in order to feel you are reciprocating with your friends in the social media sphere. Thanks to the assurance from fellow bloggers, I have since discovered the restful pleasure of a mostly visual format, and some of the beautiful shots people upload – notably @tinselcreation from NST – I would dearly love to download and have as desktop wallpaper, though you cannot do that. I post perfume pics when I have a blog post about perfume (which is increasingly rare!), but I must be honest and say I don’t see much point in posting a picture of a perfume bottle on its own unless it is staged in an original and beautiful way – mere ‘pack shots’ do nothing for me. Hajusuuri, by contrast, is one of the people who accessorises bottles with quirky creatures and ornaments. ;) And while I think it odd for people to post whole perfume reviews on Instagram – that is what long format blogs are for in my view – I am exactly the sort of person to get a bit of wordy fun from inventing silly hashtags.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think that if you were to ask Jessica in a private message for a file to use on the desktop, she’ll gladly send it to you (I would :) ).

      I can’t read long-ish posts on IG – the app’s topography isn’t really suited for that. But I got much happier once I figured out how to insert a line break into my posts! :)

      Since I enjoy seeing pictures published by people I know, I assume that they might feel the same about seeing pictures from me (especially when those have Rusty in them), but still, if it’s not for a blog post, I struggle with decision whether to publish anything. And usually I don’t.

      Speaking of Rusty… Do you not photograph Truffle too often, or do you not share those pictures? If the latter, let me assure you that those would be greatly appreciated.

      Like

  6. I do Instagram. I started up my account @rickyrebarco this year. I don’t post very many things. When I do it’s usually food I have prepared or fragrance related things like scented candles. I mostly follow greyhounds, whippets and Italian greyhounds and some cat foster moms and a couple of really adorable cats on Instagram. My favorite Instagram cat is Mugiro in Japan. He looks very much like Rusty, but he has the Scottish Fold bent ears. He spends a lot of time in a mini-laundry basket. It’s funny, at least to me. I got so depressed with everything with the election and everything going on in the world I needed something to make me smile every day. Pretty cats and dogs always make me smile.

    I also follow some perfume lovers, including Lucas and you, Undina, along with marcotchou and a couple of people who just post pretty photos of bottles. I do hashtags since a lot of my food posts are gluten free things and I did want some GF followers so I could follow them back. I have celiac disease and I’m always looking for new ideas for GF things to cook. I enter Instagram contests a lot. Haven’t won anything yet, but I try. I tag people only when a contest requires it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That cat!!! Now I’m following that account too :) Thank you. As for marcotchou, it might be cultural, but the guy has serious issues with reposting, likes, etc. His pictures are good but not extraordinary, so I’m not sure why would anyone want to repost them – with or without a credit. ;) But I might be missing something.

      Like

  7. No Instagram for me, FB sucks enough out of my life, I can’t afford the time to scroll through another platform. I would leave FB altogether but there are some people I would totally lose contact with so I stick with it, but have been pruning my feed aggressively. Too many ads lately are driving me nuts, they seem to come in spurts. Like hamamelis, I don’t like the way the world is devolving into sound bite dopamine hits, although I do like hajusuuri and cookie queen’s posts when I get a chance to see them. I have briefly considered joining Instagram just to follow Andy Tauer as he only posts there now, but I fear the slippery slope.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I probably shouldn’t add another half-post in response to your comment :), but you can read what I answered to the hamamelis’s comment above.

      If you were to create a private account on IG, not allow the notifications and follow just a couple of people you want to see pictures from, opening it once a week will allow you to quickly catch up on their posts. Just a suggestion. (BTW, if you do that, you do not have to follow me: everything important I post here, and there’s a picture from the last IG post on the blog :) ).

      Like

  8. I use Instagram but not regularly. I tried for a while to post there when I added a blog post, but I kept forgetting to do it! I do follow you, Undina, and several others who have posted here, and I enjoy seeing the quick little updates from fragrance friends like MMKinPA. My Instagram name is @old_herbaceous. I hope to post more there when the university winter break starts in mid-December and I have two consecutive weeks off. Not whinging, as I feel so lucky to have my job still, but I’ve had one week off since March, so I’m REALLY looking forward to the December break when I can devote more time to my personal pursuits!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I do like the fact that IG provides quick updates for those of my online friends who don’t have their own blogs.
      I keep promising myself that I’ll post more… and then keep questioning the value of the next picture I thought of publishing :) We’ll see if I can overcome that indecisiveness.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I don’t, as I’ve never found much appeal in social media because I’ve always preferred the sharing of personal stuff in a personal manner. However, if anything would tempt me to open an Instagram account, it would be sharing and seeing others’ pictures and posts about perfume. I still might do it one day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There are a lot of talented people there. I’m amazed at non-professional photographers’ creativity. I mean, it’s not that hard to take a good picture of something that is beautiful on its own – nature, animals, even food. But to stage a shot of your favorite perfume in such a way that it looks interesting, is an art.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I deactivated Facebook recently – may return when it’s time for my next high school reunion as FB is the only place I connect with those folks, but after unfollowing people this election cycle my feed was almost empty (except ads!). I Instagram my perfume daily – I have utterly failed at creating a tracking database so IG is my tracking these days. I also have a “personal” IG which is quite neglected, and now have an account for my sports photography hobby which is slowly becoming a business. I follow a lot of perfume accounts and, since we lost our beagle in September, the #beaglesofinstagram hashtag. I spend most of my social media time on IG.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m not a huge FB fan. I have my blog’s account that I use to publish blog updates and participate in different split groups. I visit it once a week or so. My personal FB account usually gets neglected for months: I never got into it.
      IG is strictly for perfume-related activities. And a little bit of beauty. And some cats.

      Like

  11. Woot! @hajusuuri was born on December 19, 2018 to share my entry for the office dessert contest. Guess who won? Then I pretty much went from there to share my interests – perfume, travel, food, art, quirky stuff, etc. I do purchase based on what I’ve read, rarely from the commercial advertising and more from “real” posters. I don’t explore the recommendation and I hope I’m not in one of the recommendations – I’ve been seeing some one-off weird likes. I @tag people and some companies and I also use hashtags, primarily to organize my own posts (which was how I found out someone stole one of my pictures). For full disclosure, I took about a 5-week break in June / July because I did not want to deal with hypocrisy and I also almost took a break right around the US election but decided that I will just ignore the ahem enthusiastic posts. I do like the IG format although I have to agree that there’s too many ads and some of the posting parameters should be adjusted.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I stopped opening my IG account around the same time you had your hiatus. But now it’s back to … “new normal” – so I use it again. But I don’t have that many accounts I follow, so it’s not hard.
      I like your posts and start worrying when you disappear for a couple of days :)

      Like

  12. I have an instagram to follow others and enter contests but don’t post there. I visit when there is a contest or I run a across a site and want to follow them. I follow mostly perfumers and friends. I tag in contests. Never bought based on suggested content.
    @ginahorse8

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I am a recent Instagramer, @thefragrantjourney. To be honest, I originally got on because my (grown) children had left FB, and I wanted to see the photos they posted. Then it became a challenge as I am pretty technically inept…learning how to do the posts. Some people are so talented at it; I struggle to put words or anything extra on my photos. At first I really didn’t like it as I still blog and I like words. Eventually though I began to enjoy some of the fantastic photographs people take, and I have to admit I’ve discoved new brands on this platform. I post inconsistently and not very often. I guess I’m not trying to get an audience but rather lurk and see other’s posts. (And I never did Twitter, Undina. That one came and went without my joining.)

    Liked by 2 people

  14. LOVE Instagram. It’s such low effort viewing. Also it’s a good place to pop pictures that need very little explanation or are good in their own right. It’s not the same newsy kind of thing where I feel like I’ve caught up on my friends doings like FB, more snapshots (HA!) and laughs. Often the beauty and whimsy of Insta posts inspires me, fragrance, food and funtimes especially.
    Mine is full of perfume, friends, pets, Jin and is more like hanging out together than information. @portiatbo if you’re interested. I’m pretty sure that most of you I am already following.
    Portia x

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I use Instagram regularly. Post twice a day most of the time. More than that is Instaspamming and totally uncool. I hashtag too yep. Especially for my cookies, radio, and some perfume stuff. I dislike FB intensely and have sometimes deactivated it but still come back. I love the InstaStories. We do business (shop) through Instagram too. @armadilloscookiequeen. Lockdowns would have been awful without it. I am really thankful for the friendships maintained with the InstaMessaging throughout this 2020 drama. 🍪👑

    Liked by 2 people

  16. I am a recent convert to Instagram, although I don’t post often (@grayspoole). I hashtag and follow in moderation, and it’s fun to connect with someone with a quick reaction to an IG post. I have purchased a mop and a cat claw trimmer as result of IG ads, but not much else. Lately, I’ve been learning how to take better cell phone photos (the tools are impressive) and IG captures visual experiences so well. I have posted some perfume commentaries along with photos, and I think I will continue to do so, although I admit that IG is not meant for long, reflective essays. IG photos and videos are wonderful for so many of my interests, however, including art & design, calligraphy, knitting, vintage fashion, drag, Victorian hair work…and perfumes, sort of. Photos of modern standard bottles or sample vials are not very thrilling but I can look at vintage perfumes and vintage perfume and cosmetic ads and ephemera all day. Meanwhile, I find Youtube perfume videos unbearable, and I hate Facebook, for many reasons. Twitter is for keeping up with news and politics (a.k.a. doomscrolling) but I don’t follow anyone or post there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree about most perfume videos! I feel as if my attention is being demanded, sometimes stridently. I do sometimes enjoy the guys on Wafts From The Loft, they’re much calmer and I like their English accents and the setting in the organ loft.

      Like

  17. I decided early on to stay out of “social media.” I guess I am the consumat lurker, because I do enjoy what others post. I am not much of a photographer. I am fidgety and don’t like sitting at a terminal nor looking at a smart phone screen. Just got my first ever cell/smart phone last year. So, one of those. I got comfortable with blogs about 4 years ago and having learned so much about perfume through them, I thought I should join in the conversations if only to thank people for recommendations and reviews. I very appreciate what goes into maintaining these forums. Cats, perfumes,books, and more about perfume makes the blogs fascinating enough for me.

    Like

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